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Hail the hearty, healthy mushroom!

Wednesday, September 1, 2021

By: Jeff Ash


Mushrooms cleaned and prepared for cooking.

September is National Mushroom Month, a time to appreciate mushrooms as something more than a pizza topping or as half the fun of a Mushroom and Swiss burger.

 

Mushrooms are:

  • Low in calories
  • Low in sodium
  • Cholesterol free
  • Gluten free
  • Fat free

Mushrooms pack a bunch of powerful nutrients. Mushrooms deliver more selenium, an antioxidant, than anything else found in the produce aisle at the grocery store. Antioxidants protect body cells from damage and strengthen the immune system.

 

Mushrooms offer many of the same nutritional benefits as vegetables. They deliver B vitamins, potassium and Vitamin D.

 

Because mushrooms are hearty and filling while low in calories, they can help with weight management. Eat mushrooms as part of a meal, and you’ll limit your fat intake.

 

Here are two healthy recipes using mushrooms.

 

Chicken and Mushroom Pasta

All kinds of great flavors going on in this dish, which can be ready in a half-hour.

 

Prep time: 30 minutes

 

Ingredients

8 ounces spiral veggie pasta, cooked (reserve ½ cup starchy pasta water)

1 tablespoon olive oil

8 ounces baby bella mushrooms, sliced

½ cup white onion, diced

¼ cup sun-dried tomatoes

2 teaspoons crushed garlic

½ teaspoon salt

½ teaspoon pepper

½ teaspoon Italian seasoning

Pinch of red pepper chili flakes (optional)

½ cup half and half

½ cup chicken broth

2 cups cooked spinach, fresh

2 chicken breasts, cooked and diced

¼ cup Parmesan cheese, freshly grated

 

Directions

Cook pasta according to package directions. Reserve ½ cup of pasta water. Set aside.

 

Heat olive oil in a sauté pan and add in mushrooms, onions, sun-dried tomatoes, garlic and seasonings. Stir and cook until fragrant, about 5 minutes.

 

Add in half and half, chicken broth and pasta water, and bring to a boil. Turn down to simmer for 1 to 2 minutes, stirring occasionally (pasta water will help thicken the sauce).

 

Then add in cooked chicken, spinach and Parmesan. Stir until combined. Serve warm.

 

Portobello mushrooms, red and green bell peppers and onions sliced for fajitas and cooking in a pan.

Sheet Pan Mushroom Fajitas

Who needs meat when you have portobello mushrooms?

 

Total time: 30 minutes. Makes 6 fajitas.

 

Ingredients

2 medium yellow and/or red onions, sliced into ¼-inch strips

2 large bell peppers, sliced into ¼-inch strips

2 large portobello mushrooms, sliced into ¼-inch strips

2 tablespoons avocado oil

½ teaspoon chili powder

½ teaspoon cumin

½ teaspoon garlic powder

½ teaspoon smoked paprika

¼ teaspoon salt

¼ teaspoon black pepper

¼ cup cilantro, roughly chopped

6 6-inch whole-wheat or corn tortillas

Optional toppings: avocado, salsa, hot sauce, shredded lettuce and/or cabbage, shredded cheese, chopped tomatoes, lime

 

Directions

Heat oven to 400 F. Line a large 18-by-13-inch baking sheet with parchment paper. Set aside.

 

In a large bowl, toss together onions, peppers and mushrooms with oil and spices. Distribute on the baking sheet. Roast for 25 minutes, tossing halfway through, until vegetables are soft to fork and slightly browned at the edges.

 

Heat tortillas in a hot pan over medium heat, if desired. Divide the portobello mushroom fajita mixture into tortillas. Garnish with cilantro. Serve with salsa, avocado, shredded cheese, shredded lettuce or cabbage, and a squeeze of lime.

 

Source: The Mushroom Council

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BayCare Clinic, baycare.net, is the largest physician-owned specialty-care clinic in northeastern Wisconsin and Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. It is based in Green Bay, Wisconsin. BayCare Clinic offers expertise in more than 20 specialties, with more than 100 physicians serving in 16 area communities. BayCare Clinic is a joint partner in Aurora BayCare Medical Center, a 167-bed, full-service hospital. Follow BayCare Clinic on Facebook and Twitter.